Hotels introduce big fines for smoking

Sheraton and Four Points by Sheraton recently added a new revenue stream: a $200 fine for smoking when all of the chains' hotels become smoke-free by the end of 2008.

According (subscription required) to the Wall Street Journal, Disney World will charge you as much as $500 if you light up in one of their hotel rooms, all of which are non-smoking. Swissotel Chicago pays its maids $10 for every smoker they catch.

Of course, plenty of smokers are complaining about the policy, but I think it's a good one: if you can afford to stay at Disney World and spend money on cigarettes, you can afford to pay a fine. Efforts to create inconveniences for smokers -- some hotels won't allow their guests to smoke within 15 feet of the entrance -- will encourage people to quit smoking.

And a hotel that charges $500 for smoking might be an excellent location for a "quit smoking" retreat -- Add in some spa treatments and hypnosis services, and chains like the Sheraton could probably market it as a "Stop Smoking 1-Week Getaway."
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